Goa-Portuguese

August menu

 

Goa was liberated (or annexed, depending on who’s telling you) by India, in 1961, after almost five decades of Portuguese rule. The newspaper O Heraldo was still a Portuguese daily, when I grew there in the 60’s and 70’s: the era of my fondest memories of early schooling and lazy days on Mira Mar and Dona Paula beaches. In those days, it was a hippie haven. These days, it retains its Susegaad local attitude, even though it is a major tourist destination for Indians who flock there to be on their wildest behavior. This menu features foods and flavors influenced by Portuguese colonization.

 

Fejoidas: Red and black beans cooked with garlic and onion, seasoned with cumin and peppers.

Cashew pulao: Seasoned Basmati rice cooked with cashews and raisins.   

Vegetable Xacuti: A vegetarian version of this famous Goan coconut curry.

Pao: In Goa, bread bakers send out hot loaves at meal time, fresh out of the oven, pedaled in baskets by bicycle and announced with the sound of the po-po-popo horn! 

Brinjal pickle: The Goan pickle craved for by the homesick and pregnant! Eggplants fermented and spiced with sweet-sour-piquant flavors. 

Minted-melon-cachumber: Seasonal melons in a fresh chopped salad with cilantro and mint.

Red coconut chutney: Fresh coconut and red-kashmiri chilies flavored with garlic and tamarind. 

Flan: Caramel-custard, Goa style.